Recorded in 1974 and released the following year, Ros Remembers would be the last Edmundo Ros album issued while he was still leading a band in the presentation of what has accurately been termed "popular light Latin American music." Strictly speaking, Ros had been "remembering" on records since the middle of the '50s when he reinterpreted dozens of songs from his late-‘40s repertoire. The music on this collection was peddled to the public on a double LP bearing the Decca London Phase 4 Stereo logo, which Ros had essentially helped to popularize throughout the ‘60s and early ‘70s. This means that the original contents fit nicely onto one CD. As Ros was celebrating 35 uninterrupted years as a bandleader, the record opens with him singing "Happy Anniversary" to the tune of "Happy Birthday to You," gently combined with a reprise of his earlier hit "Cuban Love Song." Spiffy female vocalists were brought in on some of the tunes, and the arrangement used for "Poinciana" is more than slightly vertiginous. Ros first recorded "I Talk to the Trees" from Lerner & Loewe's Broadway musical Paint Your Wagon when it was brand new. John Coltrane and Ray Draper turned it into a vehicle for improvisation on the 1958 Jubilee LP A Tuba Jazz, after which it was cleverly sent up by the Smothers Brothers. For his nostalgic retooling of the song on this album, Ros used the dependable soft-serve-with-bongos formula. Among the more interesting tracks on Ros Remembers are "Jungle Fantasy," which features a talented flutist, a mellow lounge treatment of "Frenesi", an uplifting remake of "Cuanto le Gusta," and a take on "Colonel Bogey," that is every bit as jolly as the caffeinated version by wacky pop organist Leonard George DeStoppelaire, popularly known as Lenny Dee.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by arwulf arwulf